Central Dogma: Chromosome Project Q&A

After spending a very productive first day in the computer lab, students now have the opportunity to ask clarifying questions about the Chromosome Project.  Students will be encouraged to share strategies for finding genes on chromosomes, and for identifying diseases associated with those genes.  Students will be ready to head back into the computer lab on Monday with an understanding of how to use the NCBI website for researching DNA and protein sequences.  Students will also be introduced to Cn3D, a special program that allows the user to visualize protein structure.  Students interested in learning more about how amino acids interact to form proteins are encouraged to experiment with Fold It, a game developed by the Baker Lab at the University of Washington.

Central Dogma: Chromosome Project – Day 1

For this individual student project, please download the following documents:

Additional example slides can be viewed here.  For this project, you will research diseases or health conditions associated with specific genes on the chromosome you have been assigned.  NCBI’s Human Genome Resources website is an excellent place to begin researching which genes are on your assigned chromosome.  Use the template and replace the existing information with your own research.  Add additional slides as needed.  Keep track of all of your work in the activity log.  You will have a new log each day and will turn in the logs along with your PowerPoint project slides next Wednesday (March 4).

Project Grading:

  • Daily Log: 10 points per log (40 points total)
  • PowerPoint slides (50 points total)
  • Reflection (10 points)
  • Presentation (10 points of extra credit)

Want to work on your project from home but need access to Microsoft PowerPoint?  Remember, as students of Highline School District, you already have a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 available for you to download and install on your home computer!  Visit https://login.microsoftonline.com/ and sign in with your school login information.

Central Dogma: Quiz

Today’s quiz consisted of 8 multiple choice questions and 4 short answer questions.  Students were tested on knowledge of DNA structure, Central Dogma vocabulary, and knowledge of how DNA codes for proteins (with an emphasis on understanding the major types of DNA mutations and associated consequences to amino acid sequences).  Students were also challenged to explain how they might apply the power of genetics to solve a problem of interest to them.  After the quiz, students were assigned chromosomes in advance of tomorrow’s work on the Chromosome Project.  Tomorrow we will meet in computer lab 245.

Central Dogma: Case Study of Cystic Fibrosis

Because of the short week, today was a full schedule Friday.  We took advantage of the longer class period by learning about the stop codon, focusing on cystic fibrosis as a model disease caused by a genetic mutation which introduces a premature stop codon in about 10% of people with CF.  After watching an inspiring music video about a 15-year-old young man with CF, students learned more about the disease and genetic mutations in general.  We finished with a game where students practiced converting amino acid sequences to RNA and then replacing individual bases to create stop codons.  The lesson plan, along with example sequences from the game can be found here.

Central Dogma: The Double Helix

Content Objective: Describe the structure of chromosomes, DNA, genes, and proteins.

Language Objective: Explain the scientific process modeled by Watson & Crick.

Entry Task: Is failure part of the scientific process?  Why or why not?  Explain your thinking in at least 4 sentences.  Draw a picture for bonus points!

Students then watched The Double Helix video (below) and answered the worksheet questions.  After the video, we shared out responses to questions 1-10.

Central Dogma: Procedure Quiz

Students had the opportunity to demonstrate proficiency in the skill of writing a Procedure.  They were provided with an EOC-style procedure writing task directly related to the strawberry DNA extraction experiment from yesterday.  During the last 15 minutes of class, students watched the Stranger Visions video to learn how their human DNA can be used to construct 3-D printed models of faces.

Central Dogma: DNA Extraction

After reviewing the Unit 4 final exams, it was evident students need additional practice writing scientific procedures.  Today, students were tasked with watching a short video of DNA extraction from a strawberry, writing a procedure for the experiment, and then working with their table partner to complete the experiment. By having to follow their own procedure, the concept of writing a procedure in enough detail for someone else to follow it was reinforced.  Students will use the procedures they wrote today to help them write a related procedure tomorrow.  Click here for today’s lesson and review the strawberry DNA extraction video below.